In granulating, pelletizing, and other industries that require industrial knives, it is easy to fall into an ordering rut. Daily work takes over, and organizations simply order the same knives over and over from the same industrial blade supplier they have been using for years instead of evaluating their cutting operation and looking for ways to enhance it. Even when these industrial knives show signs of wear, provide low-quality cuts, or require regular maintenance, organizations still tend to order the same replacement knives. This is typically due to the absence of in-house expertise to evaluate their cutting processes and create improvement plans specifically related to the knives.
Industrial knife manufacturers have the experience and knowledge to evaluate your cutting application and recognize opportunities for enhancement. Experts will analyze the material to be cut, the machine, current wear patterns of cutting knives, rotors, and dies, performance expectations, performance history, maintenance demands, and a host of other factors to identify the best blade for your cutting processes.
Questions Your Industrial Knife Manufacturer Should Be Asking
When organizations work with a professional and experienced industrial knife manufacturer, not just a distributor or reseller, you gain the benefit of an entire staff of knife experts. But how can you tell if you’re working with a professional or just another reseller? Before being able to confidently recommend a new blade, a professional knife supplier will need to know more about your unique operation and requirements. Some of the questions suppliers should be asking about should be related to:
Understanding the machine that your operation is running is essential in determining the proper blades needed. Certain blades, such as granulator blades, have tolerances that must be considered. Some questions about the machine that may be asked include:
- What machinery is your organization running?
- What is the equipment make, model, and knife configuration?
- Does the machinery receive proper maintenance?
- Is switching the blades or knives a part of the maintenance process?
Of course, an industrial knife supplier should be asking about the knives. This is one of the most important factors to understand. Some questions a professional knife supplier may ask are:
- How often do you change your knives?
- Has the cut-quality of the blade changed?
- What is the cause for changing your industrial knives?
- Are you experiencing any knife-related abnormalities?
- Has knife maintenance increased or decrease?
- Have your knives been sharpened recently?
- How many sharpenings do your blades typically undergo before needing a replacement?
Industrial blades are used with a variety of materials, from food and plastics to the toughest steels and non-ferrous materials. Before recommending a blade, your knife supplier should ask the proper questions to get a better understanding of the material your organization works with. Some questions they may ask include:
- Are there any unique considerations or challenges with cutting the material?
- What type of material are you cutting? (Ex. plastic, metal, rubber, etc.)
- Are you cutting virgin, post-consumer, post-industrial, or post-landfill material?
- Are there any contaminants that can potentially be found in the material?
Performance and Failures
Understanding any failure or performance issues will help the best industrial knife suppliers better understand the need for your operation’s cutting processes. Some questions to expect include:
- What has changed in the performance and cut-quality of the knife?
- How long did the blades last before experiencing an issue?
- Has cut quality or functionality of the blade changed?
- What is the expected life of the blade?
- Has there been any change in material, maintenance, or change in knife supplier?
- What kind of performance do you expect out of your knives?
Although it may seem like a lot, asking these types of questions will help industrial knife manufacturers figure out the ideal cutting solution for your organization, one that not only outperforms previous solutions but saves you time and money as well.
Working with a stock and custom knife supplier enables your organization to rely on their experts to continually enhance your industrial cutting processes. With the team at Carolina Knife Company on your side, you can ensure that your industrial knives or blades are the best match for your organization. If you are interested in learning more about working with Carolina Knife Co. or would like a hassle-free estimate, contact our experts today!